Will a portable dual monitor help you be more productive?

In Mario’s latest Small Biz Go Mobile podcast, he talks about using a portable dual monitor and offers tons of tips about how they can be used.

Although we’re doing more with our smartphones and tablets, for the ultimate in mobile productivity most of us still our laptop. While mobile apps can provide many of the tools we need to work, for some tasks there is simply no equivalent to fully featured software. On top of my preference for an actual keyboard to write on, I personally depend on several outstanding apps every day that provide professional features not yet present on mobile devices, including Microsoft Word, Adobe Photoshop, and Apple’s Final Cut Pro. While similar or alternative apps certainly exist for these, including Apple’s Pages and iMovie and Adobe’s Photoshop Touch, these often lack key features only available on the desktop.

With a workflow that involves heavy multitasking, simultaneously working on writing, video and images while sharing on the web, social media and via email, there is no alternative for a good laptop computer. So check this out: what if you had two screens to work with while on the go? On a desktop with dual monitors, you can have twice as many windows open, be looking at twice the amount of data without switching apps. Wouldn’t that be great on the go? With a USB dual monitor solution like the 720p Cinq, you can replicate that desktop experience while on the go.

Like this tip? Want to hear more? Check out Mario’s Small Biz Go Mobile podcast today.

New MacBook Air Challenges the Idea of a Mobile Device

We can all agree that whole idea behind a laptop is the notion that you can work from anywhere…including your lap (but I would keep an eye on the heat if you’re planning on having children). As long as you have an internet connection, you can do the same things on a laptop that you can using a full desktop computer, but just in a smaller package. I have never really thought of a laptop as a mobile device…until today when Apple released its newest version of the ultra-portable and ultra-advanced MacBook Air.

The reason why I excluded a laptop from the mobile device category was because even at their current smaller sizes, they are still kind of a pain to lug around. Additionally, with their longer than RIGHT NOW boot up times, and not-so-long battery life, I would much rather browse my favorite websites, check Twitter & Facebook, and send a couple of emails using my smartphone or tablet. I am assuming Apple took that to heart when refreshing and upgrading the new MacBook Air. Its features include:

– Lightning fast Intel Core i5 and i7 Processors with speeds up to 1.8GHz

– Flash storage that’s always on and doesn’t need to “boot up” like traditional Hard-Drive storage

– Multi-Touch trackpad that gives the MacBook Air smartphone-like gestures

– 5-7 Hour long-lasting battery that can stay in standby mode for up to 30 days

Add all of those features up and combine them with the MacBook Air’s compact size weighing in at just under 3 POUNDS for the 13″ version (but with the same sturdy Aluminum body found on the MacBook Pro) and you’ve got yourself a device that might just have you second-guessing purchasing that tablet device.

Apple is so confident that the compact and ready to go MacBook Air will be the go-to device for entry-level fans and enthusiasts, that the traditional MacBook (you know, the white one) is being phased out and replaced by the MacBook Air. You may be able to get a refurbished model if you’ve always lusted after the white MacBook that has been the “it” Apple computer for the better part of a decade. But with all the extra features at half the size, the MacBook Air (Shipped with the new Mac OS X Lion pre-installed), might just make you want to spend the extra dough ($999 to $1,699) and spring for the “new hotness”. The new MacBook Air is on sale now online and at Apple Retail Stores.

Google Apps Scheduled to Drop Older Browser Support

If you’re a small business, you should definitely look into Google Apps for your one-stop-shop of online services to support your business. Most of the services are free, and you can access your apps from any device connected to the web.

But take note, if you’ve decided to go with Google Apps for your business, be aware that the cloud service will be dropping support for older web browsers. Those specifically mentioned include Firefox 3.5, IE7 and Safari 3. Google’s Vice President of Engineering, Venkat Panchapakesan stated:

Older browsers just don’t have the chops to provide you with the same high-quality experience…In these older browsers you may have trouble using certain features in Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Google Docs and Google Sites…

Google Apps is looking towards the future in favor quicker browsers that fully support HTML5. What’s the cutoff date you ask? You have until August 1st to upgrade your web browser or “Eventually these apps may stop working entirely.” The good news for you is that web browsers are free, so it’s just a matter of if your laptop can handle a browser upgrade. The latest browsers really improve your experience on the web, so what are you waiting for? Grab the latest version of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Apple’s Safari, Mozilla Firefox, or Google’s Chrome today!

The ProBook 5330m: A New Business Laptop from HP Combines Sleek Design with Pro Media Features

You’d be forgiven if at first glance you mistook the HP ProBook 5330m, pictured right, for a MacBook Pro.  The brushed aluminum chasis and backlit chiclet keyboard are both plays straight out of Apple’s book. These are a part what HP is calling FORGE, a new design framework that brings a contemporary look to HP’s line of professional laptops.

Less than an inch thick, under four pounds, and sporting a 13.3″ HD screen, the ProBook 5330m is not a typical business offering from the company. HP reps at a recent New York City event told me that they’re starting to broaden their horizons for what can be considered a product for their corporate customers. With features like Beats Audio built-in, the new ProBook brings high-quality media playback capabilities to an attractive and rugged machine. Apparently, business laptops can no longer be sold entirely on the strengths of their corporate-friendly features—employees are increasingly demanding laptops that they want to bring home.

The 5330m is built on top of Intel’s latest notebook technologies, with Sandy Bridge-backed Core i3 and i5 dual-core processors available. It is available today starting at a very reasonable $799.

myPhoneDesktop links your Desktop to Your iDevice

As good as mobile technology is getting these days, it’s still quicker and more efficient to access the web, data, files and other content via a laptop or desktop. The faster processor, full keyboard, the WAN or WiFi connection and the larger screen make it the best way to get what you need.

But what do you do when you actually need to send something from your computer to your mobile device. Surprisingly, items like pictures, website addresses, and other information is still being sent via email to be opened up on a mobile device. Sure with online services like Dropbox and Evernote, and Instapaper, you can synchronize these items across your devices. But you still need to mess with your mobile device to make a call, or send a text message.

That’s where myPhoneDesktop fills the gap and offers a way to quickly send data from your computer to your iDevice (iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad) and handle other tasks that would otherwise keep you tied to your phone. With myPhoneDesktop, you can:

– Call any telephone number from any application or web browser…

– Send complicated url with Map’s location or route to your iPad or iPhone in seconds…

– Simplify sending a long SMS to your friend, colleague or a client…

– Bring your notes or large amount of text with you in seconds…

– Send Images or Photos to your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch from any application or web browser…

By downloading the myPhoneDesktop app to your iDevice and the desktop client to your computer, you can link your devices together to quickly send content to your device and increase work flow. If you are on-the-go or not at your own computer (Hotel, Internet Cafe or Local Library), you can use convenient and full-featured myPhoneDesktop Web Client that works in numerous browsers.

I do a great deal of app reviews, and there are times when I come across an app on my laptop that I want to download to my iPad, but don’t have a way to connect my iPad to my computer to sync the app in iTunes. With myPhoneDesktop, I can send the iTunes link to my iPad and go directly to the app in the App store without a bunch of fuss.

So quit emailing stuff to yourself and download myPhoneDesktop ($4.99 in iTunes App Store, OS 3.0 and up)